I am a daughter of a silent father. Many of us are. Many of us have had to find our way in life, tapping into our rich inner resources, and getting a bit of guidance & therapy along the way.
The silence can come from myriad circumstances. Perhaps you grew up with your father, but he never quite stepped up for you, or left mom with the full responsibility, or neither were fully present. Perhaps dad took off, parents divorced... there are many scenarios. Remember, your stories are sacred.
Fathers hold a very specific key for their daughter's feminine identity around issues of protection, boundaries, modeling a loving masculine, and empowering them in the world. Daughters of silent fathers have had to muck around a bit in order to find these important life keys.
I was raised by a step father who sexually molested me from the age of 9 to 11. My mother died when I was 11 and within a few years I landed in a foster home of a very nice family that did their best by me.
When I was younger and told my story, my friends would always asked, "Where was your real father while all of this was happening??" often with lots of emotion. They wanted to know! "Well," I would say... "my father was a police officer and he was living on his boat, so he could not really take care of my brother and me" etc, etc, etc. I believe I merely repeated the excuses he gave to me when I inquired through the years.
I met my biological father at the age of 15. I hadn't seen him since I was 5 and there was a world of abuse, trauma, chaos and loss in-between. All of those years, my father only lived about 25 minutes away from me.
I have created my own healing pathways through the years and have developed tremendous self-compassion along the way. You can imagine that I have had to process the incestuous relationship with the step father, the death of my mother and all matters around abuse, neglect and abandonment. In my late 40's I have come to deeply respect my own soul and its resiliency alongside its frailty. The legacy of the childhood will forever be a part of my story, but my dignity, my heart and passion for life remain in tact.
My exploration into spirituality and psychological processes has given me depth of insight and many tools for accessing a the sense of space and grace that is inside of me. I have come to peace on many levels and have done tremendous work and healing around the feminine/masculine energies, issues around feminine identity, and have developed compassion for the struggles of the men in our culture. I have also raised two gorgeous sons that have been my greatest teachers.
My latest blog post: When Fathers Remain Silent @ Surya Source puts a challenge and call out to fathers: I want to hear the voices of the fathers who are not silent in honor of the daughters they have the privilege of raising. I urge you to link over, read through the article, post a comment and send to fathers raising daughters asking for their participation.
There is much healing possible here... especially healing for men in our culture who have become oddly silent about matters around the sexualization of children and the relentless barrage of media images that mess with our kids' young minds. Men want their voices to be heard again, amidst all of the cultural shifts in regards to gender roles. There is also much healing possible for all of the daughters of silent fathers as they hear the voices of the men rise up.
One of my best friends in the world is a father of little girls. He and I have the kindred wounding, he from his mother and I from my father... I have accessed much healing by hearing his voice on behalf of his daughters to the best of his ability. Conversly, he has benefitted from experiencing my relationship with my sons. It is as if his "little boy" and my "little girl" get to witness and experience the mutal healing energies around this life's work of "being there" for your kids.
Women have come a long way in our culture towards gaining a powerful voice. Many of our men have become silenced and in fact, are self imploding all over the place as can be witnessed through the constant barrage in the media of mia culpas regarding all manner of sexual indescression.
Ciao for now Ladies!
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